Deep Orange 3, a next-generation Mazda concept vehicle, conceived and engineered by Clemson University automotive engineering students at the Clemson University International Center for Automotive Research (CU-ICAR), made its public debut earlier this month on its South Carolina campus.
The Deep Orange 3 project encompasses the engineering and design of a 2015 concept vehicle for Generation Y drivers.
Showcasing the next level of Mazda’s “KODO motion” design, this concept vehicle utilizes the automaker’s distinct brand personalities in an exceptionally functional package combined with sustainable vehicle performance and responsive handling.
While some may recall that the Deep Orange 3 prototype chassis vehicle was unveiled during the 2012 Specialty Equipment Market Association (SEMA) show in Las Vegas, the car was displayed minus the body panels.
According to CU-ICAR, the vehicle’s body panels were designed by student Frederick Naaman at the Art Center College of Design in Pasadena, CA.
Derek Jenkins, design director for Mazda North American Operations, said that to be part of a college program of this caliber that focuses not just on one aspect of a vehicle, but the vehicle as a whole, is an automaker’s dream come true.
“These students have provided fresh and innovative ideas from sketch pad to sheet metal, and the final product truly speaks to that open dialogue and collaboration between the Art Center College of Design and Clemson University,” Jenkins said.
Deep Orange 3 features a unique hybrid powertrain that automatically chooses front-, rear- or all-wheel drive.
The unique powertrain concept was derived based on extensive analysis of the Gen Y market. The data revealed that Gen Y, as an environmental conscious generation, is willing to invest in sustainable powertrain technologies and also has a significant interest in all-wheel-drive (AWD).
Based on these findings, a through-the-road parallel hybrid powertrain concept with a manual transmission was conceptualized.
The powertrain architecture comprises of a front-wheel-drive concept using a downsized turbocharged 4-cylinder internal combustion engine and a rear-wheel-drive concept using an electric machine.
This configuration allows for regenerative braking, all-wheel-drive and power boost functionality.
For the body, students utilized the innovative sheet-folding technology patented by Industrial Origami, which allows using lighter gauge material folded into complex, innovative, high load-bearing structures, formed with simple, low cost fixtures, at the point of assembly.
For more information, visit: www.cuicardeeporange.com